What is it?

Gout is a common form of inflammatory arthritis that is very painful. It usually affects one joint at a time, often the big toe joint. There are times when symptoms get worse, known as flares, and times when there are no symptoms, known as remission.
Gout is caused when there is too much uric acid in the body- it tends to form crystals that builds up in the joints and other tissues. The body makes uric acid when it breaks down certain foods we eat. Hyperuricemia, a high level of uric acid, does not always cause gout, and hyperuricemia without gout symptoms does not need to be treated.
Repeated bouts of gout can lead to gouty arthritis, a worsening form of arthritis.
There is no cure for gout, but you can effectively treat and manage the condition with medication and life-style changes.

285 Alikes with Gout

Learn from others
who are experiencing

Additional names

This group contains additional names:
- Gouty Arthropathy
- Gouty Tophi of Ear
- Gouty Nephropathy
- Uric Acid Nephrolithiasis

Signs & symptoms

Gout flares start suddenly and can last days or weeks. These flares are followed by long periods of remission without symptoms before another flare begins.
Along with the big toe, joints that are commonly affected are the lesser toe joints, the ankle, and the knee.
Symptoms in the affected joint may include intense pain, swelling, redness and heat.


A diagnosis can be made only during a flare:
Physical exam- your doctor will what to assess your joints.
Fluid sample from the joint- will be examine under the microscope to find uric acid crystals.
In some cases, the doctor may want to complete a blood test and an imaging test, usually an X-ray of the inflamed joint.


Your doctor may recommend a medical treatment plan to:
- Manage the pain of a flare- with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) like ibuprofen, steroids, and the anti-inflammatory drug colchicine.
- Prevent future flares- Making diet and lifestyle changes, such as losing weight, limiting alcohol, eating less red meat or organ meat, may help prevent future attacks. People with frequent acute flares or chronic gout will benefit from preventive therapy to lower uric acid levels using drugs like allopurinol, febuxostat and probenecid.

☝️ This is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Please consult with your physician before making any medical decision.

Learn more about our editorial process for content accuracy.

Alike Wisdom

Instantly get answers to medical questions with our AI, built from the collective wisdom of our community facing similar experiences

Thank you! Your submission has been received!

Find people who are
experiencing a similar
medical reality

100% Free